Also popularly referred to as the Sheepapoo, Sheepdoo and the Sheepapoo, the Sheepadoodle is a hybrid formed by mix breeding the Old English Sheepdog and the Poodle. Originating in the US Army as a military police dog, the Sheepadoodle dates back to the mid 20th century and is still a very popular pet choice in the modern day. In fact, this dog has become sought after for its teddy bear like appearance and warm personality. These traits make the Sheepadoodle a popular choice when choosing a pet, whether for the family or for apartment life.
History of the Sheepadoodle
In order to understand why the Sheepadoodle behaves the way it does, it is necessary to take a close look at its parental heritage. Many of the behaviours and characteristics displayed by the Sheepadoodle can be traced back to either the Poodle or the Old English Sheepdog, and generally helps owners to understand characteristics that this pup may have before adopting. In order to help you understand this pup, take a look at this brief description of both the Poodle and the Old English Sheepdog.
The Old English Sheepdog dates back to as far as the 19th century, and was first referred to as the “Shepherd’s Dog.” They rose to popularity as show dogs in England, and were sent to the United States in the late 19th century, where they shortly became a marker for the wealthiest families in the nation by the 20th century. They are generally known for their intelligence, brilliance and warm personality, and tend to be very sociable creatures. These dogs also do very well in outdoor and rural settings, and are comfortable living on farms and being around other animals and pets.
The Poodle finds its origins in early 19th century Germany as a working dog in contrast to it’s posh and classy repertoire today. They were mainly used as hunters for birds of the ocean such as ducks and water fowls, mainly because of their spectacular swimming abilities. In the 18th century, the Poodle became introduced to mainstream England, after which it spread to many other countries. Fast forward to the present day and the Poodle is one of the most intelligent and most loved dogs today. They tend to adapt to their living circumstances very easily, and have been known for showering their owners with time, love and affection when they want to.
Temperament and Characteristics
The Sheepadoodle’s characteristics and behavioral traits cannot all be traced back to their counterparts, but knowledge of how their parents behave will help to give some insight on why these dogs may do certain things. Generally, the Sheepadoodle is known for its sweet and gentle demeanour, and are one of the most loyal designer dog breeds around today. They are also known for being playful and quiet, which makes them one of the best companions and family dogs to have. They tend to get along easily with other pets, especially other dogs, and are easily trained because of their eager to please mentality.
Appearance and Physical Characteristics
One of the most enticing features of the Sheepadoodle is their appearance, as their lightweight and soft fur with their teddy bear like face tends to melt even the coldest human heart. These sweet little creatures generally stand no taller than 24 to 27 inches tall fully grown, which is normally the average size of a standard poodle. Their weight normally falls between 45 to 55 pounds, which may prove detrimental as your pup gets older if they do not exercise regularly, but ultimately they are the ideal size for most dogs.
Their outer coat which draws the attention of many, may be either wavy or curly, (as both the Poodle and the Old English Sheepdog have curly typed fur,) and generally tends to grow very long, especially if left untrimmed for long periods of time. This same coat also comes in varying colours depending on parental heritage, and normally ranges among the colours black, and white with brown pupps being noticed but very rare. They tend to have different patches of black and white, with one colour generally being more dominant than the other.
Grooming and Maintenance
Despite their very long and thick curly coat, Sheepadoodles do not require more maintenance than the average pup. These dogs generally shed very minimally, making cleaning up after them a breeze. They normally need to be groomed on a regular basis however, with regular trips to the dog groomer’s if you’ve yet to master the art of cutting and caring for their abnormally thick fur. When it comes to maintenance, a simple bath as needed will help to get rid of any buildup of dirt or debris that your pup has built up daily, while regular brushing once or twice a week will keep their fur clean and their skin free from irritation. Ensure that you also pay special attention to their important organs such as the eyes and ears, wiping with a wet or damp cloth to remove any buildup of dirt and prevent infection.
Health Issues and Lifespan of the English Sheepdog / Poodle Mix
One major benefit of adopting a designer dog is that they are generally free of most health issues that can be easily passed down from one generation to the other in purebreds. Because of this, the Sheepadoodle is not at risk to many of the major health issues that most dogs would be prone to developing. In their expected 12 to 15 years of life however, they are prone to a few major health conditions that should be looked at before adopting. These include but are not limited to:
- Cushing’s disease – A condition causing a spike in hormones resulting in increased appetite levels. This further causes overeating resulting in lethargy and bloating.
- Addison’s disease – A condition causing the adrenal glands to underperform, resulting in a lack of the hormones being produced.This may result in their immune system attacking the dog’s adrenal glands, causing further issues.
- Joint Issues
- Skin Conditions
Every dog has issues and concerns, but the Sheepadoodle ends to outweighs them all. Their stunning good looks coupled with their warm personality make for one of the best pets on the market. Happy adopting!